About

For over two decades, I have had the privilege of making deep human connections across one of the world’s most diverse regions: Asia. Get to know a bit more about me and how I got here.

Featured in:

Jay Tindall

Entrepreneur & Asia Traveler

My name is Jay Tindall, and as the co-founder of the ultra luxe travel company, Remote Lands, I investigate Asia’s most extraordinary destinations, meet its most interesting people, and engage in its most epic experiences for a living. Shamelessly indulging my travel addiction is the best job I could imagine.

Slider

This world would be purely a sybarite’s adventure without my camera, which allows me to record otherwise unbelievable moments and landscapes on my travels. I’m able to share my privileged perspective on this captivating continent through photos and video, motivating me to keep heading off toward the horizon.

{

Taking the road less traveled means removing the false sense of comfort you get by following the trend, thereby learning something new about the world, and yourself in the process.

{

Jay by the Numbers

I have a philosophy that has served me well in all of my travels: veer off the beaten path, participate in my surroundings, and meet people where they are. Observing from a distance will only take you so far. The most intimate travel memories are made by those who make an effort to be present and engaged.

Countries visited so far

Years living, working, and making memories in Asia

Cutting-edge years in the Interactive Media Industry

Fulfilling and wonderful years working in the travel industry

Years on the rollercoaster of entrepreneurship

The Journey

{

As a four time entrepreneur, work and travel have long gone hand in hand.

{

My early career at Reactive Systems in New Jersey developing interactive CD-ROMS and kiosks for major pharmaceutical companies gave me a strong IT background when that technology was still nascent. I moved to Hong Kong in the early Nineties, an exciting time to be an expat in the former British colony on the cusp of an emerging China. I worked for multimedia travel publisher InterOptica and later co-founded The Black Box, a leading online media company in Asia. The Black Box was honored with a Hong Kong Small Business Award and I’m proud to say we had a blue-chip client list that included Apple, AT&T, Dow Jones and Intel.

Opportunities to set up satellite offices in China – in the then up-and-coming cities of Guangzhou and Shenzhen – stoked my travel bug.

Thus began my next entrepreneurial venture – One Voice Network. The IP telephony industry was still in an early stage in 2002 as we focused on developing products in China, Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines, as well as for the South American and African markets.

{

Our unique formula has been featured in the world's most discerning, most read travel and luxury publications.

{

My years of travel and forming relationships across Asia culminated when I co-founded Remote Lands in 2006 with my business partner Catherine Heald. Catherine runs our Manhattan headquarters while I lead the team and serve our clients traveling here in Asia from our office in Bangkok. Truth be told, I am just as often working from the road.

Remote Lands is an ultra high end experiential tour operator designing and executing entirely customized holidays across Asia.

Every single trip we create encompasses both the ultimate in lavish luxuries and the truest natural beauty Asia has to offer. Our unique formula has been featured in the world's most discerning, most read travel and luxury publications. Confidentiality clauses forbid me from divulging which business leaders, influencers, and celebrities travel with Remote Lands. However we are privliged to count some of the world's most recognizable and accomplished people among our loyal clientele.

As a four-time entrepreneur, work and travel have long gone hand-in-hand.

My early career at Reactive Systems in New Jersey developing interactive CD-ROMS and kiosks for major pharmaceutical companies gave me a strong IT background when that technology was still nascent. I moved to Hong Kong in the early Nineties, an exciting time to be an expat in the former British colony on the cusp of an emerging China. I worked for multimedia travel publisher InterOptica and later co-founded The Black Box, a leading online media company in Asia. The Black Box was honored with a Hong Kong Small Business Award and I’m proud to say we had a blue-chip client list that included Apple, AT&T, Dow Jones and Intel.

Opportunities to set up satellite offices in China – in the then up-and-coming cities of Guangzhou and Shenzhen – stoked my travel bug.

Thus began my next entrepreneurial venture – One Voice Network. The IP telephony industry was still in an early stage in 2002 as we focused on developing products in China, Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines, as well as for the South American and African markets.

Our unique formula has been featured in the world’s most discerning, most read travel and luxury publications.

My years of traveling and forming relationships across Asia culminated when I co-founded Remote Lands in 2006 with my business partner Catherine Heald. Catherine runs our Manhattan headquarters while I lead the team and serve our clients traveling here in Asia from our office in Bangkok. Truth be told, I am just as often working from the road.

Remote Lands is an ultra high end experiential tour operator designing and executing entirely customized holidays across Asia.

Every single trip we create encompasses both the ultimate in lavish luxuries and the truest natural beauty Asia has to offer. Our unique formula has been featured in the world’s most discerning, most read travel and luxury publications. Confidentiality clauses forbid me from divulging which business leaders, influencers and celebrities travel with Remote Lands. However, we are privileged to count some of the world’s most recognizable and accomplished people among our loyal clientele.

A Sitdown with Jay Tindall

My unexpected journey into the travel industry:

I often get asked about my experiences living in Asia and traveling around the world. Travel has a habit of changing people for the better and connecting us to something greater than ourselves. The road less traveled is not an easy one, but it is always rewarding. Get to know a bit about my journey through this informal fireside chat by way of Q&A.

What is your favorite country you ever visited and why?

I get asked this question all the time and I never have an answer. No one place is my favorite because I find myself drawn to the contrasts in Asia among its richly varied destinations. Certainly I gravitate towards travel that takes me out of my comfort zone because I am much too restless to sunbathe on a beach for more than a few days. I enjoy visiting tribal cultures all over the world, the more remote the better as you can see from my photos. While there is no one favorite, some standout recent travel memories include the Pamir Highway in Tajikistan, Ladakh, Turkmenistan, and North Korea.

What has been your most memorable travel experience?

I recently had two travel experiences I’ll never forget, ones that in a few years will not be possible anymore. I visited several newly opened tribal villages outside of Loikaw in Myanmar’s Karen Hills then traveled on to some remote areas of Phongsali province in the extreme north of Laos where the local people had never seen a foreigner before. No one I met had ever had their photo taken before I did it. I felt profoundly fortunate, as I know these cultures will not be around forever.

What do you find most challenging about this type of travel?

Finding enough time. Since I travel most often for my work, these trips are always fast paced. I change hotels every day, trying to see as much as possible. It can be tiring but I would never complain about getting to do it all

How has travel shaped you as a person?

I travel to meet and connect with people living lives I could not have imagined when I was growing up in New Jersey. This diverse perspective gives me real insights and empathy for how others live and what they value. I often observe a real bias in Western media and have learned that what we see on TV even when its reported as news should never be accepted at face value. Go out and see the world for yourself. Form your own opinions. Even places like North Korea are not the places CNN makes them out to be and you would never know the truth without visiting. Only travel provides that education.

Where did you grow up and what was childhood like for you?

I grew up in Mendham, New Jersey around 45 minutes from Manhattan. From my teenage years, I developed a strong desire to travel and to get out of the small town where I grew up. I studied journalism and video production at Rutgers University and that further fueled my desire to travel, first all over the US then later the world.

Why did you decide to make your home in Bangkok, Thailand?

The original reasons for basing myself in Bangkok were business ones. Bangkok is the ideal hub for reaching the greatest number of Asian destinations, living costs are reasonable and we have great staff at Remote Lands. Over time, the Thai capital has come to feel like home. It is an excellent place to live that combines traditional and modern elements in one culturally stimulating place that I find edgier than Singapore or Hong Kong, which I like to visit.

Has your experience of travel changed over time?

Though I never traveled as a backpacker, as I get older I appreciate comfort more when it is available. Certainly I can rough it when it is not. I can be happy with a private pool villa at an ultra-luxe resort any day but I will always want to combine that with something to stimulate my sense of wonder.

What inspired you to start Remote Lands?

After 20 years on the bleeding edge of the tech industry, I was ready for a change. Most of my career had an international focus and travel was already a vital part of my lifestyle. So when my business partner at Remote Lands approached me with the idea of starting a travel company, I jumped at it with one condition. From the start, I felt we had to identify a unique niche and go for it in the biggest way possible. Certainly, I feel we have.

How have your past experiences in the tech industry helped you as a traveler and an entrepreneur?

In the tech industry I traveled heavily and developed business partnerships in 40 countries across Asia, Africa, South America, the Middle East and Europe. What a fantastic lesson in how to deal with people from every type of background. That taught me to be flexible and resourceful, two qualities I rely on every time I set off on the next adventure.

What camera equipment do you use when you travel?

These days I tend to leave my Canon 5D at home, and shoot with a Sony A6500, which is a fantastic little camera for ‘run and gun’ shooting. On occasion I’ll also use my Sony RX100 MKIV. I also can’t live without my Zhiyun Crane 2 gimbal and DJI Mavic Pro drone. My latest purchase was a DJI OSMO Action cam.

How did you get all these people in so many different destinations to pose for you?

You can’t be shy or lazy or it doesn’t happen. I approach my photography and therefore my subjects as a professional would, which means directing people to get the shot. I would tell anyone else attempting this to tell people what you want. Most often they listen, although I have learned it helps to offer some incentive. Like that it is a fair exchange. When I want to take group shots in more remote places I find its best to deal with ‘the guy in charge.’ In Loikaw, Myanmar we rolled into the village with bags of rice, medicine and alcohol. We headed straight to the village elder and then everything suddenly unfolded. When it’s a face that captivates me, there is nothing like establishing a rapport. So I put the camera down and start from there. I don’t worry about language barriers, a little eye contact showing my genuine interest and walls usually start coming down.

Are there any countries left for you to visit?

There are many countries left for me to visit. Miraculously, considering how often I travel, there are a few Asia destinations I still look forward to in my future: Maldives, and Timor-Leste come to mind. Globally my wish list is almost endless: Iran where I’ve been trying to go for some time, and the Caucasus (Azerbaijan, Armenia and Georgia) are places I’ve been dreaming about for quite awhile

How would you sum up your travel philosophy in one sentence?

My travel philosophy is to veer off the beaten path and out of my comfort zone as often as possible and to interact with people I meet along the way rather than merely observing them from a safe distance. Travel memories are made in those deeply personal moments.

More to Explore

{

Every walk, every drive, every moment in Asia is an opportunity to create a memory and build a connection with somebody. It is my privilege to navigate this captivating place with camera in hand in search of greater understanding of the world’s beauty and complexity.

Are you ready to take the journey with me? Whether through words, still photographs, or video, join me on my travels across the Asian continent.

{